Singer Elton John appeared via videolink in a London courtroom on Monday to testify in the sexual assault trial of Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey.
Spacey, 63, pleaded not guilty at London’s Southwark Crown Court to 12 counts of sex crimes allegedly committed against four men in Britain between 2001 and 2013.
The crimes allegedly took place at a time when he was living and working primarily in Britain, including since 2003 as artistic director of the Old Vic theater in London.
The four accusers said Spacey aggressively groped them and, in the case of one of the complainants, performed oral sex on him while he was passed out in Spacey’s apartment, which the actor said last week was “completely wrong and disturbing”.
The two-time Oscar winner called John as a witness on Monday, with the British singer appearing via videolink from Monaco.
John was asked about Spacey’s presence at a lavish party hosted by the singer in the early 2000s, en route to which Spacey allegedly sexually assaulted a motorist so aggressively that he nearly crashed his car.
John said the actor spent the night at his and his husband’s home in Windsor after the event, but said, “I don’t remember him coming down after that.”
He was also asked by prosecutor Christine Agnew about a photo showing the claimant outside a London theater when John left the venue on another occasion a few years later.
John said he didn’t recognize the man and wouldn’t have noticed him at the time as it was “always a mad dash” to get to the car when he left a location with photographers outside. “They can be the queen and I don’t notice,” he said.
John’s husband, David Furnish, also testified via videolink from Monaco, saying Spacey only attended a party they threw annually at their home in 2001, a few years earlier than the accuser had stated in his deposition.
Furnish said he occasionally spoke with the complainant, who he described as a “very friendly, affable, laid-back person”.
“You can always engage in fun banter with him,” Furnish said. “He was a good, fun, engaging person.”
The man told the court that Spacey made increasingly unwanted sexual advances, which made him physically ill, while the actor said they had a consensual and “romantic” relationship.
Furnish stated to the court that he remembers asking the plaintiff “how is London’s best-looking driver doing?”, adding: “He was always very comfortable with that sort of exchange”.
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